Guide to Federal Records

General Records of the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare [HEW]


(Record Group 235)
1935-81

Overview of Records Locations

Table of Contents

  • 235.1 Administrative History
  • 235.2 Records of the Federal Security Agency (FSA) 1935-52
    • 235.2.1 General records
    • 235.2.2 Records of the Office of the General Counsel
    • 235.2.3 Records of the Division of Personnel Management
    • 235.2.4 Records of the Office of Information
    • 235.2.5 Records of the War Research Service
    • 235.2.6 Records of the Office of War Property Distribution
  • 235.3 Records of the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare (HEW) 1951-78
    • 235.3.1 General records
    • 235.3.2 Records of the Office of the Assistant Secretary (Administration)
    • 235.3.3 Records of the Office of the Assistant Secretary (Planning and Evaluation)
    • 235.3.4 Records of the Office of the Assistant Secretary (Public Affairs)
    • 235.3.5 Records of the Review Panel on New Drug Regulations
  • 235.4 Records of the Public Health Division, Office of the General Counsel, HEW 1942-69
  • 235.5 Other Records 1940-73
  • 235.6 Textual Records (General) 1935-81
  • 235.7 Motion Pictures (General) 1941, 1965-70
  • 235.8 Still Pictures (General) 1944-77

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235.1 Administrative History

Established: By Reorganization Plan No. 1 of 1953, effective April 11, 1953.

Predecessor Agencies:
  • Federal Security Agency (FSA, 1939-53)

Functions: Administered, through constituent agencies, federal and federal-state programs in public health, education, and social and economic security.

Abolished: By the Department of Education Organization Act (93 Stat. 695), October 17, 1979.

Successor Agencies: Department of Health and Human Services and Department of Education.

Finding Aids: Jerry N. Hess, comp., Preliminary Inventory of the Records of the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, PI 181 (1975); supplement in National Archives microfiche edition of preliminary inventories.

Related Records:
Record copies of publications of the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare in RG 287, Publications of the U.S. Government.
Records of the Office of Education, RG 12.
Records of the Civilian Conservation Corps, RG 35.
Records of the Social Security Administration, RG 47.
Records of the Food and Drug Administration, RG 88.
Records of the Public Health Service, 1912-1968, RG 90.
Records of the Children's Bureau, RG 102.
Records of the National Youth Administration, RG 119.
Records of the Office of Employment Security, RG 183.
Records of the War Manpower Commission, RG 211.
Records of the Office of Community War Services, RG 215.
Records of the Social and Rehabilitation Service, RG 363.
Records of St. Elizabeths Hospital, RG 418.
General Records of the Department of Education, RG 441.
General Records of the Department of Health and Human Services, RG 468.

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235.2 Records of the Federal Security Agency (FSA)
1935-52

History: Established by Reorganization Plan No. I of 1939, effective July 1, 1939, with oversight responsibility for the following constituent units transferred from other agencies: Office of Education; Public Health Service (PHS); National Youth Administration (NYA); Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC); Social Security Board (SSB); and U.S. Employment Service (USES, incorporated by same plan into Bureau of Employment Security, SSB). For administrative histories of these constituent units, see RG 12, RG 90, RG 119, RG 35, RG 47, and RG 183, respectively. Radio Division and U.S. Film Service transferred from Department of the Treasury and incorporated into Office of Education; and federal functions relating to American Printing House for the Blind transferred from Department of the Treasury, by Reorganization Plan No. II of 1939, effective July 1, 1939. Food and Drug Administration transferred from Department of Agriculture; St. Elizabeths Hospital transferred from Department of the Interior; Freedmen's Hospital transferred from Department of the Interior and incorporated into PHS; and federal functions relating to Howard University and the Columbia Institution for the Deaf transferred from Department of the Interior, by Reorganization Plan No. IV of 1940, effective June 30, 1940. Apprentice Training Service (ATS) transferred from Department of Labor; and Training Within Industry Service (TWIS) transferred from War Production Board, by EO 9139, April 18, 1942. CCC abolished by Labor-Federal Security Appropriation Act (56 Stat. 569), July 2, 1942. War Research Service (WRS) established by verbal directive of the President and the Secretary of War, August 26, 1942, to coordinate federal research in biological warfare. NYA, USES, ATS, and TWIS transferred to War Manpower Commission by EO 9247, September 17, 1942. Office of Community War Services (OCWS; SEE RG 215) established in FSA by EO 9338, April 29, 1943, superseding abolished Office of Defense Health and Welfare Services. Office of Vocational Rehabilitation established, September 4, 1943, pursuant to Vocational Rehabilitation Act (57 Stat. 374), July 6, 1943. WRS abolished, with functions transferred to War Department, by letter of Secretary of War and FSA Administrator to the President, May 12, 1944, approved by the President, June 8, 1944. By Reorganization Plan No. 2 of 1946, effective July 16, 1946, SSB abolished, with functions transferred to new and expanded FSA agency, Social Security Administration; and Bureau of Employees' Compensation (BEC) and Employees' Compensation Appeals Board (ECAB) established, superseding abolished U.S. Employees' Compensation Commission. OCWS abolished, effective December 31, 1946, by Labor-Security Appropriation Act, 1947 (60 Stat. 695), July 26, 1946. BEC and ECAB transferred to Department of Labor by Reorganization Plan No. 19 of 1950, effective May 24, 1950. FSA abolished by Reorganization Plan No. 1 of 1953, effective April 11, 1953, with functions transferred to newly established Department of Health, Education, and Welfare. See 235.1.

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235.2.1 General records

Textual Records: Central decimal correspondence, 1939-50. Official files of Assistant Administrator Watson B. Miller, 1941- 45; and Assistant to the Administrator James A. Drain, 1939-43. Reports on St. Elizabeths Hospital, 1945-47; FSA operations efficiency, 1946-50; and U.S. Civil Service Commission inspections of FSA personnel operations, 1947-50. Organizational charts, 1946-52.

Related Records: Oral history interview of Oscar R. Ewing (Administrator, 1947-52), in Truman Library. Papers of Oveta Culp Hobby (Administrator, 1953), 1952-55, in Eisenhower Library. Papers of Wayne Coy (Assistant Administrator, 1939-41), 1934-57, in Roosevelt Library. Record copies of publications of the Federal Security Agency in RG 287, Publications of the U.S. Government.

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235.2.2 Records of the Office of the General Counsel

Textual Records: Correspondence relating to old-age and survivors' benefits, 1935-42. Pending legislation case files, 1936-43. Copies of legal opinions, with related correspondence and reports, 1936-47. Guidelines to old-age insurance payments, 1938-39. Transcripts of regional attorneys' conferences, 1938-39.

Related Records: Papers of Alanson W. Willcox (General Counsel, 1947-53), 1943-53, in Truman Library.

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235.2.3 Records of the Division of Personnel Management

Textual Records: Studies and reports on aspects of personnel management, 1936-43. Retained copies of reports to U.S. Civil Service Commission on federal civilian employment appropriations, 1936-43. Statistical and other reports of the Analysis Section, 1936-41.

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235.2.4 Records of the Office of Information

Textual Records: Record copies of press releases, articles, and speeches, 1939-46.

Sound Recordings: First broadcast of FSA radio series, "I Hear America Singing," 1942 (1 item). Radio-broadcast counseling sessions between Counselor David Felton and persons undergoing vocational rehabilitation, 1947 (7 items).

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235.2.5 Records of the War Research Service

Textual Records: Correspondence with institutions under contract to conduct research in biological warfare, 1943-44. Administrative records, 1942-47.

Related Records: Records of the Chemical Warfare Service, RG 175.

Subject Access Terms: Warfare, biological.

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235.2.6 Records of the Office of War Property Distribution

History: Established by FSA Administrator, March 1945, to assist Surplus Property Board in Office of War Mobilization and Reconversion in evaluating applications of nonprofit health, educational, and social welfare organizations to receive surplus war material. Terminated January 10, 1947.

Textual Records: General correspondence, 1946-47. Reports on aspects of surplus property disposal, 1944-46. Policies and procedures reference file, 1941-46.

Related Records: Records of the Office of War Mobilization and Reconversion, RG 250.

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235.3 Records of the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare
(HEW)
1951-78

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235.3.1 General records

Textual Records: Central decimal correspondence, including correspondence conducted by predecessor agency, FSA, 1951-55. Organizational charts, 1953-55.

Related Records: Papers of Oveta Culp Hobby (Secretary, 1953-55), 1952-55, in Eisenhower Library. Oral history interview of Marion B. Folsom (Secretary, 1955-58), in Eisenhower Library. Papers (portions closed) of Arthur S. Flemming (Secretary, 1958-61), 1939-75, in Eisenhower Library. Administrative history of HEW, 1964-68, in Johnson Library. Oral history interview of Anthony J. Celebrezze (Secretary, 1962-65), in Johnson Library. Papers (closed), 1965-68, and oral history interview (permission required) of John W. Gardner (Secretary, 1965-68), in Johnson Library. Papers (portions closed), 1961-69, and oral history interviews of Wilbur J. Cohen (Assistant Secretary, 1961-65; Under Secretary, 1965-68; and Secretary, 1968-69), in Johnson Library; additional oral history interviews in Kennedy Library. Microfilm copies of the papers (portions closed) of Forrest David Mathews (Secretary, 1975-77), 1975-77, in Ford Library. Oral history interview of Nelson A. Rockefeller (Under Secretary, 1953-54), in Eisenhower Library. Papers, 1907-71, and oral history interview of Bertha S. Adkins (Under Secretary, 1958-61), in Eisenhower Library. Papers, 1960-65, and oral history interview of Ivan A. Nestigen (Under Secretary, 1961-65), in Kennedy Library. Papers of Dean W. Coston (Deputy Assistant Secretary for Legislative Services, 1964-66; and Deputy Under Secretary, 1966-69) relating to Task Force on Networks for Knowledge, 1967-68, in Johnson Library. Papers (closed) of William Gorham (Assistant Secretary for Program Coordination, 1965-68), 1966-73, in Johnson Library. Papers (closed) of James F. Kelly (Deputy Comptroller, 1961-66; and Assistant Secretary, Comptroller, 1966-71), 1964-68, in Johnson Library. Oral history interview of Philip R. Lee (Assistant Secretary for Health and Scientific Affairs, 1965-69), in Johnson Library. Oral history interview of Harold W. Horowitz (Associate General Counsel, 1961- 64), in Johnson Library. Papers (portions closed) of William S. Ballenger III (Assistant Secretary for Special Projects, 1975-76; and Deputy Assistant Secretary for Legislation, 1976-77), 1973- 78, in Kennedy Library. Papers, 1964-69, and oral history interview of Samuel W. Halperin (Deputy Assistant Secretary for Legislation, 1966-69), 1964-69, in Johnson Library.

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235.3.2 Records of the Office of the Assistant Secretary
(Administration)

Textual Records: Official files of Jule M. Sugarman, Acting Director of the Office of Child Development (OCD, 1969-70), relating mainly to the establishment and operation of OCD, but also including information on Sugarman's prior work in the Children's Bureau and with the Head Start Program, in the Office of Economic Opportunity, 1966-70.

Related Records: Oral history interview of Jule M. Sugarman, in Johnson Library. Papers (closed) of Donald F. Simpson (Assistant Secretary for Administration, 1967-69), 1965-68, in Johnson Library. Oral history interviews of James Farmer (Assistant Secretary (Administration), 1969-70), in Johnson Library.

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235.3.3 Records of the Office of the Assistant Secretary
(Planning and Evaluation)

Machine-Readable Records: New Jersey, Gary (Indiana), Seattle, and Denver Cross-Site Analysis File, 1968-76 (4 data sets), with supporting documentation. Seattle and Denver Income Maintenance Experiment (SIME/DIME), 1970-78 (37 data sets), with supporting documentation. Gary Income Maintenance Experiment (GIME), 1971-74 (4 data sets), with supporting documentation. Survey (1976) of Income and Education (SIE), 1976- 78 (9 data sets), with supporting documentation. Multi regional Input-Output Accounts (MRIO), 1977 (4 data sets), with supporting documentation.

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235.3.4 Records of the Office of the Assistant Secretary (Public
Affairs)

Video Recordings: "You," a series consisting of interviews with educators, scientists, and physicians on various health and social welfare issues, 1970-73 (26 items).

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235.3.5 Records of the Review Panel on New Drug Regulations

History: Established by Secretary of HEW, February 21, 1975, to study Food and Drug Administration policies on approval and disapproval of new drugs. Terminated upon submission of final report, May 31, 1977.

Textual Records: Transcripts of meetings, with accompanying background material, 1975-77. Transcripts of executive sessions, 1976-77. Staff papers, 1975-77. Interim and special reports, and final report, 1976-77.

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235.4 Records of the Public Health Division, Office of the
General Counsel, HEW
1942-69

Textual Records: Subject correspondence, 1942-69. Records relating to hospital construction under the Hospital Survey and Construction Act ("Hill-Burton Act," 60 Stat. 1040, August 13, 1946), 1944-69. Records relating to actions and advice of the General Counsel, 1951-69. Correspondence relating to Indian health, 1955-69.

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235.5 Other Records
1940-73

Textual Records: Official files of FSA/HEW official Dean Atlee Snyder, consisting of correspondence, 1945-73; and a compilation of document copies detailing the history of OCWS and its predecessors (1940-47), and FSA/HEW civil defense activities (1947-58), 1940-58.

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235.6 Textual Records (General)
1935-81

Secretary of the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare's Subject Correspondence Files, 1956-74. Index to portraits of personnel of the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare and component and predecessor agencies, 1945-81. Mixed files including Secretary's subject correspondence files, 1956-74; President's Council on Physical Fitness correspondence and reports, 1956-68; Secretary's National Advisory Committee on Dyslexia files, 1968-69; Secretary's National Advisory Committee on Pesticides files, 1969-79; Secretary's Committee on Health Protection and Disease Prevention Files, 1969-70; state correspondence and obsolete personnel plans, 1939-50; General Counsel's correspondence on public assistance programs and the Social Security Act. 1935-61; manuals, 1949-71; budget estimates and justifications, 1948-62; special studies and reports, 1969-74; transcripts of speeches, 1948-71; legal opinions and related memorandums, 1936-51; General Counsel's coverage opinions, 1937-50; and division and regional legal opinion files, 1944-74.

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235.7 Motion Pictures (General)
1941, 1965-70

Motion Pictures: Army in Overalls, showing CCC activities, 1941 (1 reel). Hospitals for Disaster, depicting emergency nationwide mobilization of medical resources following a natural or nuclear catastrophe, 1965 (1 reel). Documentaries and public service announcements on various health and social welfare issues, 1966- 70 (70 reels).

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235.8 Still Pictures (General)
1944-77

Federal Security Agency, Office of Vocational Rehabilitation, photographic negatives (45 images) of the "Athletic Roundup" exhibition, 1948. Photographic negatives (37,000 images) of the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare and component and predecessor agencies, 1944-77.


Bibliographic note: Web version based on Guide to Federal Records in the National Archives of the United States. Compiled by Robert B. Matchette et al. Washington, DC: National Archives and Records Administration, 1995.
3 volumes, 2428 pages.

Ordering information

This Web version is updated from time to time to include records processed since 1995.


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